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Favorable Shows of 2010

January 5, 2011

Rock never sounded so good

One thing music blogs never seem to touch upon is the quality of live shows of music groups they support.  Anyone can review an album and rate it.  How many “fans” will actually spend the money and go obtain a unique sounding experience?  Now I understand, “concerts cost money”, “I like the album better” or “I’m to busy.”  My response to you is, shut up and watch.  Concerts define a band or musician.  If they cannot capture their music in a live performance, then they are just a manufactured sound that should disconnect you from their music.  Here are some worthwhile shows I attended that showcased a good live show.

My favorite live show of the year had to be Faith No More live at Williamsburg Waterfront in Brooklyn New York.  No before you get me started, I know this venue is located in Hipster capital, but honestly, hipsters were hiding behind their trust fund checks and vinyl records of pavement when Mike Patton and crew entered into Brooklyn (Note, Mike Patton made fun of plenty of hipsters, even though none were there).  Mike Patton might have one of the greatest live voices I have ever heard.  With growls, melodies and squealing, Mike Patton cannot be touched.  Take that Anthony Kedis.  Highlights by FNM included their opening of the show with Midnight Cowboy,  into “The Real Thing”,”Be aggressive” and then “Land of Sunshine”.  These four songs establish an energetic filled performance with plenty of time left.  Rahzel was a special guest included on “Chinese Arithmetic” and “We Care A lot”.  Overall, the show provided hard rock, funk and momentum with a strong, profound excellence that only Faith No More can deliver.

My second favorite show of the year was Mastadon/Deftones/Alice in Chains. This second show would have been in my top spot had Mastadon not been performing.  They sounded terrible.  However, the Deftones, with whom I have a huge bias for, were astounding.  Opening their short set list with “Rocket Skates” into “Around the Fur” made every face melt.  Not many fans attended the show for the Deftones compared to Alice in Chains, but the Deftones scared plenty of the AIC fans with Chino’s pounding screams and Carpenter’s vicious rifts.  Abe Cunnigham’s drum set sounded so precise and clear with his ghost notes on “Change(in the house of flies)” and “Passenger” completed a chilling sound mixed with raw emotion.  Ending their set list with “Engine No. 9” and “7 words” really displayed how the Deftones have matured.  7 words sounds like a mix between thrash and punk on the album Adrenaline.  In concert, the group makes it sound like an updated version that is more consistent with the Deftones evolving sound.  The Deftones made their Diamond Eye songs sound intense and surreal, while bringing out the inner thrash with the Adrenaline songs.  These two diverse sounds were complimented well with songs from Around the Fur and White Pony.

When Alice in Chains entered into the stage with “Them Bones”, the crowd exploded.  A high contrast compared to my Mahopac friends and I during the Deftones.  Obvious songs were played, including “Rooster”, “Man in the Box”, closing with “Would”(which my brother proclaims that the last-minute of Would is the greatest sound humanity has ever come across).  This was my third time seeing Alice in Chains.  Although not as good as the first time I saw them after reuniting back in 07, Jerry Cantrell still rocks on guitar and will always be better than Tommy Shaw or any other over rated group.

My last show includes Primus.  Even though Primus sucks, their live show is phenomenal.  Another show witnessed at Williamsburg Waterfront(which is a beautiful venue by the way).  With original Primus drummer, Jay Lane,  on the skins, song selection was narrow.  The Brown Album songs stood out.  Golden Boy was my favorite of the show, Over the Falls helped calm down the insane mosh pits right before Sgt. Baker caused every little hipster in Williamsburg to let out some type of girly shriek as if they just found out their Dad was no longer supporting their pathetic ironic ways.  Take that Steve Aoki, you think you are eccentric?  I like to see you wear a crazy russian suit like Les Claypool, make a nasty bass sound, without repeating or being redundant, like Steve Aoki usually is.

Recap, go see Faith No More, Deftones, Alice in Chains or Primus, and you’ll be surprised with how much better music sounds compared to listening to it on headphones.

Dishonorable mention:  Nas and Damien Marley, also at Williamsburg Waterfront.  c’mon Nas how are you going to play New York and not play NY State of Mind or any other Illmatic song?

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